Altice approaches Vivendi to buy SFR

Pascale Paoli-Lebailly | 24-02-2014

Vivendi Group confirmed today (24 February) that it has been approached by Altice, Numericable's parent company, regarding a potential alliance between SFR and the cable operator.

The media group noted that to date, it has not received any formal offer, implicitly denying a report by Les Echos that stated a provisional agreement had been reached on Friday.

According to the financial daily, the Vivendi supervisory board has given green light to SFR CEO Jean-Yves Charlier to negotiate and reach a full agreement in the coming weeks.

The operation would valorise SFR to more than 15 billion, with expected synergies at 6 billion, according to Les Echos.

"The Vivendi supervisory board will announce a decision, if necessary, as and when appropriate," Vivendi said.

If both groups agreed on a sale, Altice, which achieved an IPO last January in Amsterdam, would control more than 50% of the SFR-Numericable entity, with Vivendi holding 32%.

In addition to Numericable in France, Altice is active in other European countries such as Belgium, Luxembourg, Portugal and Switzerland as well as in Israel and French overseas territories.

In the Dominican Republic, it has recently taken over Orange's affiliate.

Altice claims 13.9 million subscribers globally.